Deliberations

When the case is submitted to the jury and the jurors retire to the jury room, the first thing done is the selection of a foreperson. The foreperson presides over the deliberations and signs and brings the verdict into court.

In some cases, interrogatories will be submitted to the jury. That simply means that at the end of the case the judge will give to the jury some written questions upon particular issues of fact in the case to be answered by the jury. The answers are written down by the foreperson, who signs his or her name following the answer to the last interrogatory.

In the jury room, each juror should be given full opportunity to state and discuss his or her views. Deliberations should he characterized both by a free and fearless expression of opinions and a patient and tolerant attention to the opinions of others. Each juror should listen carefully to the views of the other members of the jury and respect their opinions. The juror talking the longest and the loudest is not necessarily the wisest. After full and frank discussion and calm and unbiased consideration, those views appearing most sensible and sound should prevail.

If additional instructions are needed during deliberations, or when a verdict is agreed upon, or agreement is impossible after careful and painstaking deliberation, notify the bailiff, and he or she will report to the judge.

The information in this section has been provided courtesy of the Indiana State Bar Association.